Lab-Grown Diamonds v. Mined Diamonds: Is There a Difference?
You have a lot to consider as you shop around for the perfect engagement ring. You’ll want to evaluate the shape of the center gemstone, the setting of the ring, and more. One of those key areas is evaluating lab-grown diamonds v. mined diamonds. Is there a difference between the two? The fast answer is yes, and, in this article, we’ll dive deeper into what sets these two types of diamonds apart.
What Are Lab-Grown Diamonds?
A lab-grown diamond is also known as a manufactured diamond since experts create it in a lab. There are a few methods for this process, but the most common are Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) and High-Pressure, High-Temperature (HPHT). They’ll use a piece of a diamond at the start of the process to grow into a larger one.
Lab-Grown Diamonds Are Real Diamonds
While we don’t mine lab-grown diamonds from the earth, the gem experts—the Gemological Institute of America and the International Gemological Institute—both recognize these as real diamonds. This is because lab-grown diamonds still have the necessary components to categorize them as gemstones. For example, they have a carat size, color, clarity grade, and even distinct shape. These criteria are also known as the 4 Cs, and gemologists use them to sort and grade gemstones.
What Lab-Grown Diamonds Are Not
Many have concerns about lab-grown diamonds being “synthetic” or even compare them to cubic zirconia. Both of these are incorrect, and gemologists recognize this. Also, lab-grown diamonds are made of carbon, just like natural diamonds; cubic zirconia, on the other hand, contains no carbon. A lab-grown diamond looks just as dazzling in the light as a mined one.
Pros of Lab-Grown Diamonds
Often, lab-grown diamonds cost less than their mined counterparts. In fact, you could buy larger lab-grown diamonds at a lower cost than you could a natural one since scarcity doesn’t drive up the price. It’s also worth noting that lab-grown diamonds are:
- More sustainable
- Better quality
- More ethical
In addition to this, they are real diamonds, just different. Another great thing about these types of diamonds is that they look so real that you cannot spot the difference between this and a natural one without specialized equipment.
While lab-grown diamonds typically cost less, this can change if demand increases. Also, unlike natural diamonds, they’re not considered rare, so the price depends on what people want to buy.
Other Facts About Lab-Grown Diamonds
Another concern many buyers have is whether a lab-grown diamond sparkles the same as a natural one, and the good news is, it does! Just like a natural diamond, a lab-grown diamond has grades for color, cut, and clarity, so the way each lab-grown diamond reflects light can differ.
In addition to this, lab-grown diamonds are as strong as natural diamonds, so you won’t have to worry about them easily chipping either. Essentially, lab-grown diamonds follow the same physical properties as natural diamonds to ensure no one can spot the difference.
Many experts have also pointed out that lab-grown gems are popular amongst millennials because of ethical factors and because these modern diamonds offer more variety. In addition, thanks to lab-grown diamonds, shoppers aren’t reliant on expensive natural diamonds as they search out the perfect engagement ring.
What Are Mined Diamonds?
Mined diamonds are exactly what they sound like: precious stones formed deep within the earth. We put such a high value on mined diamonds because they are much rarer than lab-grown diamonds. There are various ways to mine natural diamonds, including:
- Pipe mining
- Alluvial mining
- Marine mining
Each of these methods differs, but they all share the goal of extracting a precious gem from the planet. However, many view the process of mining diamonds as corrupt due to the history surrounding this process. This is especially because various wars have resulted from the desire for these mines. Due to the unethical practices and conflicts surrounding natural diamonds, some shoppers boycott them.
Why Some Prefer Natural Diamonds
Many buyers gravitate toward natural diamonds because of the history and tradition surrounding them. For centuries, societies have considered diamonds symbols of wealth and love. No two natural diamonds could ever be alike since they form within the earth’s crust.
Why Are Natural Diamonds Valuable?
Natural diamonds cost a lot more than lab-grown ones, and this is because the supply is unpredictable, just as it is for any other natural material. Diamonds take billions of years to form, and that’s another reason many love them—it’s like wearing a piece of the past.
Which One Is Better?
Answering the common question of whether there is a difference between lab-grown diamonds and mined diamonds helps buyers pick out that perfect stone. After all, an engagement ring symbolizes love, and both natural and lab-grown show this in different ways. While a natural diamond represents the unique beauty in love, lab-grown diamonds embody all the work that goes into creating a relationship.
Both types of diamonds are great options, and the one you purchase depends on what aligns with your needs and values. While natural diamonds are unique, they’re also expensive. On the other hand, lab-grown diamonds look incredible and are budget-friendly for almost all buyers. Lab-grown diamonds also have ethical origins and tend to be more environmentally friendly. Take time to weigh all these items as you decide on the type of diamond you prefer.
Shop for Custom-Made Jewelry
Caleesi Designs is a custom jewelry designer in Austin, Texas, that creates beautiful jewelry pieces with lab-grown diamonds. Create your very own custom ring as you select everything from shape, color, carat weight, and more. We also offer ring restoration, chain repairs, and other types of jewelry repair so that you can take care of your family heirlooms and other precious pieces.
As a family-owned company, we prioritize helping our customers find the ring that tells their love story. Purchase a lab-grown diamond ring that you’ll cherish forever!